BUFFALO, Minn. (KMSP) - A family from Buffalo, Minnesota, is still in shock after a week of turbulence and high emotions.
New mother Ashley Simmons recently experienced one of the happiest days of her life - followed by one of the worst when her home was destroyed in a fire.
Simmons calls her newest bundle of joy her "miracle baby," and even though Brooklyn is just a few days old, she's certainly earned her nickname.
"I was told if she would have gotten any of that smoke inhalation, it would have been really bad for her. [We’re] really lucky she didn't get anything," she said.
Simmons gave birth to her baby girl at Buffalo Hospital on June 15, but she was only able to spend a full day at home with her newborn and her two other children before their mobile home caught fire on the morning of June 19.
“My son was screaming, ‘Mom, fire! Mom, fire!’ I opened the door and there were flames…I took off running down the hallway."
Investigators say the fire started in the kitchen and soon spread to the rest of the home.
Even though everyone inside made it out unharmed, Simmons and her family lost everything they own, including four cats and their home of five years. Simmons didn't have insurance.
"I feel sad, I feel mad. I’m frustrated. It took me five years to get where I am at. To see it go up in flames in a few minutes, it’s something you don't ever want to experience. It’s not easy," she said.
For now, the single mother and her three children are staying with a neighbor. Community members have collected clothes, toys and baby supplies for her and the family. Simmons said she appreciates all the help getting back on her feet after the fire.
"Words can't express how grateful I am. Everyone has come to help out; the act of kindness has been unreal," she said.
Simmons is trying to raise enough money to empty and remove her current mobile home and to buy a new one. If you'd like to help with that or any of their other expenses, a GoFundMe has been setup to help with any donation.